Perception of Reality or Reality of Perception

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A Troubled Man
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Perception of Reality or Reality of Perception

Post #1

Post by A Troubled Man »

We are constantly bombarded with believers telling us their versions of reality in which gods, demons, angels, etc. are constantly swirling around our heads in endless battles of good vs. evil, of invisible gods who intervene in our affairs and all other types of supernatural events taking place right under our noses.

Since there is only one reality and no one has ever shown it to be anything other than what we all experience it to be every day, which never shows those gods, angels or other supernatural events existing and occurring, are believers perceiving that as reality, are they just misunderstanding the terms reality and perception or are they merely wishing reality was the way they want it to be?


Reality - That which exists objectively and in fact.

Perception - to become aware of (something) through the senses, to recognize or observe.

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Re: Perception of Reality or Reality of Perception

Post #51

Post by Tired of the Nonsense »

[Replying to post 50 by Zzyzx]
JP Cusic wrote: One more declaration for this topic - is that perception can affect reality NOT because there is any power or substance in the perspective itself but because every person is a son or daughter of God and as such we give the power to our perspective, and we can (as an individual) access that power in our self and so it is not really the outward perspective but the inward or spiritual which generates the perspective.

It is similar to ESP but more, and yet every person has it inherently.
I have been told repeatedly by Christians over the years, that the knowledge of the existence of God in inherent in all humans. Apparently it is much like the soul. This inherent knowledge of God is there because Christians have determined that it must necessarily be so. I have also been told that all humans inherently seek God, and that only those individuals who prefer to live a life of vice and sin intentionally turn their back on God. Yet I have never lived a life of vice and sin, as I understand the meaning of vice and sin, and I would like to know in what way this assertion is anything other than Christian mythology and wishful thinking in action. In other words, make it up and declare it to be true! Because Christians also proclaim, as you have yourself, that to feel the presence of God one must first believe in God. I do not know a single atheist who indicates that they have ever felt the presence of, or have been in any way in touch with God.

When I was believer as a child I used to pray to God. And I was always assured that God answers back. He never did though. Never once. And when I reached the realization that no God actually existed in the first place, our mutual communication skills did not improve in the least. God only talks to people who have convinced themselves that God talks to them. And for those people, God conveniently speaks in the language of Christians, or Hindus, or Muslims, or Buddhists. And He invariably says things that Christians, or Hindus, or Muslims, or Buddhists expect to hear.
Image "The word God is for me nothing more than the expression and product of human weaknesses, the Bible a collection of honorable, but still primitive legends which are nevertheless pretty childish. No interpretation no matter how subtle can (for me) change this." -- Albert Einstein -- Written in 1954 to Jewish philosopher Erik Gutkind.

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Re: Perception of Reality or Reality of Perception

Post #52

Post by JP Cusick »

Zzyzx wrote: .
[Replying to post 49 by JP Cusick]
Why should people believe this is anything more than wishful thinking and flight of fantasy?
I embrace wishful thinking and flights of fancy, so your point is to dismiss the ideas based on those, and that dismissal is the part that I see as a big mistake.

It is just rejecting what you refuse to believe.

As has been said in this thread = To believe is a virtue and disbelief is a defect. - but I do not know if I can explain the principle effectively.

To believe is not some absolute declaration, as like other people tell me that there is no God and I believe the person, but for myself I still know that God is real, so me believing the Atheist does not mean that I am therefore an Atheist too - hell no.

In previous comments we were taking about the brainwashing of Christmas and of Santa Claus, and the brainwashing is not the lies - the brainwashing is to violate our sense of trust so then we stop believing because our trust becomes broken.

Thereafter each person needs to repair that damage done by learning how to trust again and learn how to start believing again, and without doing that repair to our self then we are not healthy and we remain damaged.

For some people it is not Santa Claus or Christmas as their trust is violated by their broken marriage or friends' betrayal or whatever reason but it is a widespread mental sickness today where people can not trust and can not believe.

The thing about wishful thinking and flights of fancy when done correctly for the right things then they are great fun and adventure and very interesting.

The spiritual quests are far more rewarding then the worldly pursuits of gratifying lust or seeking greed or violent stimulus as like most of our evil society feeds on.

I like equating the beginning of "Harry Potter" in that some big oath Hagrid tells Harry that he is a wizard and Harry believes and goes off to be a wizard. So people today who do not trust and will not believe then they would not accept being a wizard and would report Hagrid to the police and the adventure would be rejected instead of embraced. The same equation is true about me telling people that they are children of God and they have power from God and yet they do not believe and do not trust so they miss the adventure. In my view being a child of God is much better and more realistic then to be a wizard.

The same scenario is told in the Gospels that the people refused to believe Jesus, and so to shut Him up they crucified Him.

We simply can not walk through the best of doors without first believing and trusting in the things that challenge our boundaries.

If some one lies or deceives us then that is their defect, we no longer need to let our trust be violated by the betrayal or the depravity of others.
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Re: Perception of Reality or Reality of Perception

Post #53

Post by Tired of the Nonsense »

[Replying to post 52 by JP Cusick]
JP Cusick wrote: I embrace wishful thinking and flights of fancy, so your point is to dismiss the ideas based on those, and that dismissal is the part that I see as a big mistake.
This is about as close to an admission of guilt as I have yet to see a believer make.

And by "guilt" of course I mean the guilt of abject gullibility. You embrace gullibility.

gullible [guhl-uh-buhl]
adjective
1. easily deceived or cheated.

You embrace naiveté. You give yourself over entirely to the process of being fooled and deluded.

And you have every right to do these things if you choose. But even you must admit, knowingly choosing to be fooled and deluded does not make for a good argument to present to others.
JP Cusick wrote: It is just rejecting what you refuse to believe.
Well...yes! We do not choose to purposely be fooled and deluded.
JP Cusick wrote: As has been said in this thread = To believe is a virtue and disbelief is a defect. - but I do not know if I can explain the principle effectively.
Because you have decided that being fooled and deluded is a virtue. And it is very difficult to come up with a "principle" that can serve to make being fooled and deluded sound like a desirable thing.

JP Cusick wrote: To believe is not some absolute declaration, as like other people tell me that there is no God and I believe the person, but for myself I still know that God is real, so me believing the Atheist does not mean that I am therefore an Atheist too - hell no.
To be an atheist to to be without theos. It is to hold no religious beliefs. I doubt that there is an atheist here who expects to convince you that your religious beliefs are delusions. Most atheists would be satisfied if you simply understand why some people hold no religious beliefs of their own. You have faith, and atheists have facts. Atheists will never bridge the gap between facts and faith. Because facts are based on physical evidence, and faith is based on delusions. Delusions do not require facts to support them. Believers of course believe that they have the facts to support their beliefs. But that is a part of the delusion.
JP Cusick wrote: In previous comments we were taking about the brainwashing of Christmas and of Santa Claus, and the brainwashing is not the lies - the brainwashing is to violate our sense of trust so then we stop believing because our trust becomes broken.
Do you notice that children born to Muslim parents or children born to Hindu parents almost never grow up to be Christians. They grow up to be what they were brainwashed from birth to believe. Coincidentally, rather few children who were raised to be Christian grow up to be Muslims, or Hindus. Brainwashing is being told to believe without question in things which simply are not valid.
JP Cusick wrote: Thereafter each person needs to repair that damage done by learning how to trust again and learn how to start believing again, and without doing that repair to our self then we are not healthy and we remain damaged.
How does a person repair the damage... according to what you are proposing? By learning and accepting "the truth." The truth as declared by someone who has given themselves over entirely to being fooled and deluded. Someone who has submitted entirely to one particular system of brainwashing.
JP Cusick wrote: For some people it is not Santa Claus or Christmas as their trust is violated by their broken marriage or friends' betrayal or whatever reason but it is a widespread mental sickness today where people can not trust and can not believe.
Are we to be surprised that someone who has chosen to embrace being fooled and deluded as a goal in life has experienced having their trust violated?
JP Cusick wrote: The thing about wishful thinking and flights of fancy when done correctly for the right things then they are great fun and adventure and very interesting.

The spiritual quests are far more rewarding then the worldly pursuits of gratifying lust or seeking greed or violent stimulus as like most of our evil society feeds on.

I like equating the beginning of "Harry Potter" in that some big oath Hagrid tells Harry that he is a wizard and Harry believes and goes off to be a wizard. So people today who do not trust and will not believe then they would not accept being a wizard and would report Hagrid to the police and the adventure would be rejected instead of embraced. The same equation is true about me telling people that they are children of God and they have power from God and yet they do not believe and do not trust so they miss the adventure. In my view being a child of God is much better and more realistic then to be a wizard.
The trick of course is to always keep in mind that you are being entertained through the suspension of your natural disbelief and by going along with the story that is being presented. Anyone who sits and watches a Harry Potter movie and is continuously concerned with the things and events which occur in the story and which are not consistent with reality is missing out on the fun of the movie. The world of Harry Potter is imaginary. It's a story being told for entertainment. And when the movie is over you still exist in the same old world of reality you were actually in the entire time.

THERE ARE NO SPIRITUAL GUESTS! There is imagination, and there is reality.
JP Cusick wrote: The same scenario is told in the Gospels that the people refused to believe Jesus, and so to shut Him up they crucified Him.
Like Harry Potter the Gospels contain a mixture of actual reality and make believe. In the Gospel accounts, the portions that COULD be true, MIGHT be true. And the portions that defy all common experience and common sense are make believe.
JP Cusick wrote: We simply can not walk through the best of doors without first believing and trusting in the things that challenge our boundaries.

If some one lies or deceives us then that is their defect, we no longer need to let our trust be violated by the betrayal or the depravity of others.
You are suggesting that we should be open to being deceived. If you start by believing in things that challenge boundaries, then your boundaries were never established to begin with. Boundaries are established for a reason. Changing them should require a very hard FACTUAL reason. Crossing the threshold by being gullible is the way to establishing no boundaries at all. That method leads to foolishness and delusion.
Image "The word God is for me nothing more than the expression and product of human weaknesses, the Bible a collection of honorable, but still primitive legends which are nevertheless pretty childish. No interpretation no matter how subtle can (for me) change this." -- Albert Einstein -- Written in 1954 to Jewish philosopher Erik Gutkind.

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Re: Perception of Reality or Reality of Perception

Post #54

Post by Zzyzx »

.
JP Cusick wrote:
Zzyzx wrote: Why should people believe this is anything more than wishful thinking and flight of fantasy?
I embrace wishful thinking and flights of fancy, so your point is to dismiss the ideas based on those, and that dismissal is the part that I see as a big mistake.
Wishful thinking and flights of fantasy may be appealing and may be embraced by many. However, that is personal preference and has no merit in debate.
JP Cusick wrote: It is just rejecting what you refuse to believe.
If something is wishful thinking and a flight of fantasy, I (for one) do not accept it as a basis for reasoned discussion, debate, or decisions.
JP Cusick wrote: As has been said in this thread = To believe is a virtue and disbelief is a defect. -
It has also been said that to believe without 'due diligence' is to be GULLIBLE -- easily duped or cheated https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/gullible
JP Cusick wrote: but I do not know if I can explain the principle effectively.
Preachers, prophets, politicians, and con-men appreciate gullible audiences -- those who accept fanciful tales, unsupported claims, and wishful promises.
JP Cusick wrote: The thing about wishful thinking and flights of fancy when done correctly for the right things then they are great fun and adventure and very interesting.
Many people find fantasy to be entertaining. It does not appeal to me -- and is not useful for me in making reasoned decisions.
JP Cusick wrote: The spiritual quests are far more rewarding then the worldly pursuits of gratifying lust or seeking greed or violent stimulus as like most of our evil society feeds on.
Fantasy and/or 'spiritual quests' may be rewarding to those so inclined.

There are MANY alternatives to 'spiritual quests' that do not involve lust, greed, or violence.

I, for one, find the real world to be interesting and rewarding enough without fantasizing. I do not agree our society is 'evil' -- thought it does contain evil as well as 'good' and a lot of 'neutral'

Many Christians seem to fixate on 'evil' -- and claim that their favorite religion offers 'salvation'. However, those are just words since Christians do NOT demonstrate superior avoidance of 'evil' -- and are incarcerated and divorced in the US at rates at or above other groups (including non-believers). Also, women who profess to be members of a religion that preaches against abortion have half a million abortions per year in the US.
JP Cusick wrote: The same scenario is told in the Gospels that the people refused to believe Jesus, and so to shut Him up they crucified Him.
According to gospel tales, Jesus was executed for opposing Roman and Jewish authorities. There does not seem to be record of the event in actual records of the era.
JP Cusick wrote: We simply can not walk through the best of doors without first believing and trusting in the things that challenge our boundaries.
Challenge of boundaries need not involve fantasy and wishful thinking.
JP Cusick wrote: If some one lies or deceives us then that is their defect, we no longer need to let our trust be violated by the betrayal or the depravity of others.
Agree -- with that statement.
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Re: Perception of Reality or Reality of Perception

Post #55

Post by JP Cusick »

Zzyzx wrote: Wishful thinking and flights of fantasy may be appealing and may be embraced by many. However, that is personal preference and has no merit in debate.

If something is wishful thinking and a flight of fantasy, I (for one) do not accept it as a basis for reasoned discussion, debate, or decisions.
In psychology that kind of perspective is what is called a "wall" because a wall shuts out life and it shuts thy self inside the walls.

Some of the greatest events in this life have been based on wishful thinking and flights of fantasy.

As like envisioning the earth as a globe instead of flat, to envision a flying machine, travel to the Moon, heart transplant, because at one time these were all wishful thinking and flights of fantasy.

Yet here you say to shut such things out of discussion or debate when they be wishful thinking and flights of fantasy.

It might be called or viewed as "personal preference" but I view them as the doorway to a more fun life and the door to great adventures.

I do more than discuss such things, as I take the ideas out into my real life and put them into action.
Zzyzx wrote: It has also been said that to believe without 'due diligence' is to be GULLIBLE -- easily duped or cheated https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/gullible

Preachers, prophets, politicians, and con-men appreciate gullible audiences -- those who accept fanciful tales, unsupported claims, and wishful promises.
Our society is aggressively against the only things that can lead us out of our slow but steady decline into the sewer, and that mentality is hard to resist.

I remember a story about Christopher Columbus as they were sailing the crew wanted to mutiny and throw Columbus into the water because they became more certain that they were going to sail off of the end of the flat earth.

The fear of being fooled and of being gullible is a poison to the mind.
Zzyzx wrote: There are MANY alternatives to 'spiritual quests' that do not involve lust, greed, or violence.
I do not find that to be accurate.

The spiritual quest has unlimited avenues to the full extent of one's imagination or their zeal, but otherwise is limited to the big three = lust, greed, and violence.

I would agree that many so called spiritual quests are really ignorant and waste of time, but in those cases I find the influence of the lust and violence and greed to be what damages the spirit of the quest.
Zzyzx wrote: Many Christians seem to fixate on 'evil' -- and claim that their favorite religion offers 'salvation'. However, those are just words since Christians do NOT demonstrate superior avoidance of 'evil' -- and are incarcerated and divorced in the US at rates at or above other groups (including non-believers). Also, women who profess to be members of a religion that preaches against abortion have half a million abortions per year in the US.
Well I really just talk for myself and my own perspective and my own faith.

I do not like most of Christianity myself, and Jesus is not Christianity.

The fact that Christianity has failed miserably - that does not mean that Jesus Christ is a failure too - no.
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Re: Perception of Reality or Reality of Perception

Post #56

Post by Tired of the Nonsense »

[Replying to post 55 by JP Cusick]
JP Cusick wrote: In psychology that kind of perspective is what is called a "wall" because a wall shuts out life and it shuts thy self inside the walls.

Some of the greatest events in this life have been based on wishful thinking and flights of fantasy.

As like envisioning the earth as a globe instead of flat, to envision a flying machine, travel to the Moon, heart transplant, because at one time these were all wishful thinking and flights of fantasy.

Yet here you say to shut such things out of discussion or debate when they be wishful thinking and flights of fantasy.
Wikipedia
Physical law
This article is about the philosophy of scientific laws. For the scientific and mathematical aspects, see Laws of science.
A physical law or scientific law is a theoretical statement "inferred from particular facts, applicable to a defined group or class of phenomena, and expressible by the statement that a particular phenomenon always occurs if certain conditions be present."[1] Physical laws are typically conclusions based on repeated scientific experiments and observations over many years and which have become accepted universally within the scientific community.

Description
Several general properties of physical laws have been identified. Physical laws are:

*True, at least within their regime of validity. By definition, there have never been repeatable contradicting observations.
*Universal. They appear to apply everywhere in the universe.
*Simple. They are typically expressed in terms of a single mathematical equation.
*Absolute. Nothing in the universe appears to affect them.
*Stable. Unchanged since first discovered
*Omnipotent. Everything in the universe apparently must comply with them (according to observations).
*Generally conservative of quantity.
*Often expressions of existing homogeneities (symmetries) of space and time.
*Typically theoretically reversible in time (if non-quantum), although time itself is irreversible.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Physical_law


In science this "wall" that you are refering to is known as the laws of physics. It is the dividing line between make believe and reality. Understanding what is possible, what is not, and exactly why, has allowed us to exploit those things which ARE possible, and turn them to our advantage.

Flight is a very good example. Humans beings simply do not have the physical characteristics necessary for controlled flight. Most creatures do not. But the creatures that do have the characteristics necessary for controlled flight make it very clear that flight is not a violation of the laws of physics under the right conditions. Knowing that it is possible has made flight for humans a reality. But only by using very specific physical aids which stay within the limits of physical law. Flying on broomsticks however, as in Harry Potter, is still make believe. And it will remain so. Because that sort of flight defies the laws of physics. That sort of flight relies on magic, and magic is entirely the result of the human imagination at work. Because while it may be fun to imagine that anything could be true, careful observation of the real world indicates that not everything IS true. In the physical world we are subject to the limitations of the physical world. Only in the imaginary world are such limitations removed.
JP Cusick wrote: It might be called or viewed as "personal preference" but I view them as the doorway to a more fun life and the door to great adventures.

I do more than discuss such things, as I take the ideas out into my real life and put them into action.
Unless you can show examples from your personal experience (and provide some sort of actual proof) that you have experienced events which transcend the known laws of physics, then you are just as subject to the laws of physics as are the rest of us. You are also just as free to imagine things that COULD be true in your mind, as are the rest of us.
JP Cusick wrote: Our society is aggressively against the only things that can lead us out of our slow but steady decline into the sewer, and that mentality is hard to resist.
Christianity has dominated western thought and western society for most of the last 2,000 years. And yet here we are. Perhaps the time has come to recognize that make believe will never be the answer to our problems, and try to reach a consensus on taking actual practical PHYSICAL steps to address the problems that plague society.

Now, many people might consider that the unrealistic dream of an idealist. And yet we in the USA have been operating under the unrealistic dream of idealistic dreamers for more than two centuries now. It's called the US Constitution, an idealistic document contrived to do something which had never before been achieved in all of human history. And that was to make everyone equal under the law and for these equal people to be self governing. As long as the Constitution is the rule of the land, we will not be in the sewer.

I should also point out that the US Constitution allows for the free practice of religion, but specifically does not allow the state to support a specific religion.
JP Cusick wrote: I remember a story about Christopher Columbus as they were sailing the crew wanted to mutiny and throw Columbus into the water because they became more certain that they were going to sail off of the end of the flat earth.
Most of the educated of Columbus' day were perfectly aware that the earth is round. Columbus had no fear of "sailing over the edge" of a flat earth. In the third century BC, an Egyptian scientist named Eratosthenes calculated the circumference of the Earth to a reasonable accuracy. He accomplished this by paying a man to pace out the distance between Alexandria and the Egyptian city of Syene, which is due south of Alexandria. Eratosthenes then used simple geometry to work out that the Earth is about 44,000 km in circumference. The currently accepted figure is about 41,000 km in circumference. Columbus certainly knew that the Earth is round, even though it was commonly accepted by the uneducated of the day that the Earth is flat. And common sailors were commonly ignorant. Being short on knowledge but long on imagination, they conceived of all sorts of monsters and fanciful terrors which awaited them at "the ends of the Earth." Because that is how "make it up and declare it to be true" works. Slowly but surely knowledge overcomes ignorance, you see.

It turns out however, that simply providing the ignorant with knowledge does not necessarily solve the problem. Because the ignorant often resolve to cling to their ignorance in spite of accepted knowledge.

Image
JP Cusick wrote: The fear of being fooled and of being gullible is a poison to the mind.
I could probably go on for pages on just why this is such a ridiculous position to take. But I am going to provide just three videos instead.







Here are a few more tidbits on the physical nature of profound gullibility.


The Christian Post
Pastor Tries to Imitate Jesus' Miracle Of Walking On Water — But Drowns and Gets Devoured By 3 Crocodiles

A pastor from Zimbabwe tried not just to imitate the miracle of Jesus Christ walking on the water (Matthew 14:22-33) but to even increase its level of difficulty by walking across a river teeming with crocodiles.

Sadly, he failed.

Pastor Jonathan Mthethwa of the Saint of the Last Days Church tried to do a "Jesus miracle act" to show that faith can move mountains or, in his case, turn crocodiles into stepping stones on the water.

He then gathered his congregants at the banks of a river known as Crocodile River for a personal demonstration of his faith.

However, according to the Daily Post, the pastor drowned and was seen by his church members being devoured by three crocodiles.

"The pastor taught us about faith on Sunday last week," Deacon Nkosi, a member of the church, was quoted as saying. "He promised he would demonstrate his faith to us today, but he unfortunately ended up drowning and getting eaten by three large crocodiles in front of us."

He said the pastor fasted and prayed the whole week before they went to the river in his effort to convince them of the power of faith.

"We still don't understand how this happened," Nkosi added.

He said Pastor Mthethwa walked for about 30 meters into the river before the crocodiles appeared from nowhere and attacked him.

"They finished him in a couple of minutes. All that was left of him when they finished eating him is a pair of sandals and his underwear floating above the water," Nkosi said.

The church members called for emergency rescuers, but the pastor was already dead when they arrived 30 minutes later.

Another African pastor also allegedly tried to replicate Jesus' "walk on the water" miracle a few years back but also drowned as a result.

Pastor Franck Kabele, 35, of Gabon, reportedly told his congregation that he could reenact the same miracles Jesus did as written in the Bible.

He invited his congregants to watch him perform the miracle in Libreville, Gabon's capital. He told them that he would cross an estuary by foot, which is normally a 20-minute boat ride. But soon after entering the water, Kabele found himself completely submerged and drowned.

Another failed attempt to replicate a biblical miracle was reported in Nigeria where a self-proclaimed prophet claimed that he could also walk into a den full of lions and stay there unharmed just like what Daniel did (Daniel 6) as written in the Bible.

Ignoring the zoo keepers, the prophet reportedly entered a cage full of lions. After entering the lion's den, he was mauled to death by the animals.
http://www.christianpost.com/news/pasto ... es-183604/



The difference between being filled with unconditional faith and being monumentally stupid is actually pretty obvious. I should also point out however, that keeping an open mind is a necessary quality of science. By the same token, claims which violate all common experience, common observation, and therefore all common sense, should undergo especially rigorous levels of skepticism, and examination.
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Re: Perception of Reality or Reality of Perception

Post #57

Post by JP Cusick »

JP Cusick wrote:
Zzyzx wrote: Wishful thinking and flights of fantasy may be appealing and may be embraced by many. However, that is personal preference and has no merit in debate.

If something is wishful thinking and a flight of fantasy, I (for one) do not accept it as a basis for reasoned discussion, debate, or decisions.
Some of the greatest events in this life have been based on wishful thinking and flights of fantasy.

As like envisioning the earth as a globe instead of flat, to envision a flying machine, travel to the Moon, heart transplant, because at one time these were all wishful thinking and flights of fantasy.

Yet here you say to shut such things out of discussion or debate when they be wishful thinking and flights of fantasy.


I do not like most of Christianity myself, and Jesus is not Christianity.

The fact that Christianity has failed miserably - that does not mean that Jesus Christ is a failure too - no.
After this exchange above then I have thought about it often and now I am convinced that the concept of God has never been "wishful thinking" or "a flight of fantasy" and so here we have exposed another error.

To go to the Moon and machines that fly and heart transplant do fit into those qualities of "wishful thinking" or "a flight of fantasy", but the belief in God does not.

When I first found out about the reality of God then I was stunned and it was a minor shock to my senses, just as I was surprised by seeing a Ghost, and after that then my perspective on life and perspective on reality changed and improved.

As such I now do not believe that anyone ever wished for a God as "wishful thinking" or "a flight of fantasy" because now I see that it just does not work that way concerning God.

For human adventures then yes "wishful thinking" or "a flight of fantasy" but not those for a God.

We can review evidence from the Bible and in real life that the existence of God has never been wishful nor fancy flights.

In the Bible the people told Moses (out of fear) that they did not want God to talk to them or else they will die, Exodus 20:19-21, and the people rejected Jesus as most of the people did not want any son of God, plus the old Testament Prophets were resisted and the New Testament Apostles were all killed off, so this shows the exact opposite of wishful thinking or a flight of fantasy.

In real life I found that Christopher Columbus said and believed that the earth was round but just in 2 dimensions, flat and round picture, and it was nearly 200 years later when Isaac Newton proclaimed the law of gravity but still Newton saw an oblate sphere for earth were it was flat on top, just as the old Greeks had the god Atlas holding the earth from underneath, because it was stunning and shocking to find the earth as it really is.

The atomic bomb was not "wishful thinking" or "a flight of fantasy" as the bomb was in the same league with finding God as they were both stunning and shocking to realize and to face.

Perception is Reality and Reality is Perception.

I do realize that mainstream Protestant Churches preach God as a kind of invisible Santa Claus in the sky and that distortion is not a true representation of anything real, and they are not even being true to their self or to the members of their religion.

A false perception does create a false reality.
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Re: Perception of Reality or Reality of Perception

Post #58

Post by Tired of the Nonsense »

[Replying to post 57 by JP Cusick]
JP Cusick wrote: After this exchange above then I have thought about it often and now I am convinced that the concept of God has never been "wishful thinking" or "a flight of fantasy" and so here we have exposed another error.
Christian belief brings with it an important list of promises, the most important of which is an eternal extension of life in a glorious paradise. One of the great disadvantages to our human intelligence is having to live with the knowledge of our own mortality. Many people are terrified of the prospect of death, and Christian belief works to alleviate this fear by promising that death is simply the portal to a glorious new life. Christian belief also promises that we will be reunited again with our dead loved ones. And as an added bonus, Christian belief offers to wash away all the perceived sins of this life. These promises fill an important list of emotional needs for many people.

This is wishful thinking, pure and simple. Because there is absolutely NO evidence that any of these things are true. People simply wish it to be so. And that is wishful
thinking.

There was a time when the concept of God seemed the only plausible answer to the question of existence. Even at a time when many intellectuals were quietly dismissing Christian claims as implausible, the concept of the existence of God, some form of a supernatural Supreme Being, remained viable. Because a Supreme Being using supernatural powers seemed to represent the only possible answer.

And then the 20th century happened. And science has filled in the missing pieces of the puzzle that allow us to recognize that the universe exists and functions entirely according to natural principles which can be understood. The concept of God is no longer needed. We have learned over the course of centuries that the things which were once considered to be indisputable physical evidence for the existence of God are actually purely natural occurrences and that they happen for purely natural reasons. No actual physical evidence for God can be established.

God has been reduced to a flight of fancy. God always WAS a flight of fancy of course. But now we have reached the stage in our acquisition of knowledge to recognize that fact. Knowledge inevitably obliterates make believe.

Belief in God gives people the hope, the illusion, that their lives must have some higher purpose, above and beyond simply existing. If the universe operates for purely natural reasons, human life is simply one possible result. Humans may actually be fairly unique in the universe. But we are not special in the eyes of the universe. Because the universe has no eyes. Things either happen, or they do not. And non believers are not offering anyone a better deal.

The emotional need that many have for wanting God to exist, is wishful thinking by definition. It's a need and a hope for something that may well be nothing more than imagination.

And if that is the way things are, then that is the way things are. So the struggle becomes one between attempting to learn and understand the nature of the physical reality that we actually live in, or constructing a comforting cocoon of wishful thinking that serves to provide an illusion of emotional comfort. I am not going to assert that one system of thought is better that the other. That is up to each individual to decide. I AM going to assert that one system of thought is actually supported by the physical evidence, and the other is only supported by a network of wishful thinking, however. And a network of wishful thinking is no longer able to stand up well in a debate of facts and evidence.
JP Cusick wrote: To go to the Moon and machines that fly and heart transplant do fit into those qualities of "wishful thinking" or "a flight of fantasy", but the belief in God does not.
There is a huge difference between science fiction and pure fantasy. An early French silent film imagined making a trip to the moon by being shot out of a giant cannon. And this is science fiction, because it was presented as a physical possibility. A physical possibility which is physically impractical, as it turns out. Flying to the moon on a broomstick, or a winged steed name al-Baraq, on the other hand, are fantasies. They are flights of fancy which are outside of the laws of physics.

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JP Cusick wrote: When I first found out about the reality of God then I was stunned and it was a minor shock to my senses, just as I was surprised by seeing a Ghost, and after that then my

perspective on life and perspective on reality changed and improved.

As such I now do not believe that anyone ever wished for a God as "wishful thinking" or "a flight of fantasy" because now I see that it just does not work that way concerning God.
While no one is doubting your word, we are doubting your interpretation of what you experienced. What you describe was a very personal and subjective experience. Much like Paul's experience at a time when he was deathly ill and under the care of a Christian man. His experience afterwards was that he believed that he had communed with a man who had been dead for several years. But there is reasonable cause to doubt the reality of such a claim.

Individuals all over the world and throughout time have believed they have undergone some sort of a supernatural connection with the divine. The main variable is that the God or God's, and the belief system itself, have been quite different. The main consistency can be recognized in the way these various experiences invariably conform to the expectations provided by the belief system that the individual already subscribed to at the time of the experience.
JP Cusick wrote: For human adventures then yes "wishful thinking" or "a flight of fantasy" but not those for a God.
I have never experienced an actual physical adventure that involved an actual "flight of fantasy," outside of a movie theater. But movies involve buying into the imaginary and the active suspension of reality for a couple of hours. Actual physical reality never changes. A chance to experience make belief, at least temporarily, makes it worth the price of admission.

And there is always that inevitable bit of a let down when the movie is over, and we a are forced to return to physical reality. Because make believe can be very stimulating. Which is why children play imaginary games.

I was full of imaginary scenarios when I was a kid. And I do miss that to some extent. I had a lot of fun as a child. But I vastly prefer living in and understanding, to the degree that I do at least, the real world. Unfortunately there is the adult world of reality, and the childlike world of make believe. Adults who attempt to live in both experience a sort of cognitive underdevelopment that goes under the general term of psychosis. A very general definition of psychosis is the loss of contact with reality.

Note: As I wrote the above I was looking at my Fanner 50 from the 1950's, sitting on top of my computer in a leather holster that I had when I was about eight. It's too small for my hand now, and I will never be as fast and accurate as I was with that pistol when I was a kid. I keep it close at hand though, just in case of bad guys.
JP Cusick wrote: We can review evidence from the Bible and in real life that the existence of God has never been wishful nor fancy flights.
Let's do that.
JP Cusick wrote: In the Bible the people told Moses (out of fear) that they did not want God to talk to them or else they will die, Exodus 20:19-21, and the people rejected Jesus as most of the people did not want any son of God, plus the old Testament Prophets were resisted and the New Testament Apostles were all killed off, so this shows the exact opposite of wishful thinking or a flight of fantasy.
Remarkably, God not only spoke directly to Moses without killing him, Moses got to see God's butt (Ex.33:23). Unless of course these stories are just a flight of fancy.
JP Cusick wrote: In real life I found that Christopher Columbus said and believed that the earth was round but just in 2 dimensions, flat and round picture, and it was nearly 200 years later when Isaac Newton proclaimed the law of gravity but still Newton saw an oblate sphere for earth were it was flat on top, just as the old Greeks had the god Atlas holding the earth from underneath, because it was stunning and shocking to find the earth as it really is.
Newton wasn't that far off. The Earth is not flat at the poles, but it does bulge at the equator, due to centrifugal force. I would like to have a reference to Columbus supposing that the earth is round in two dimensions. Because you see, round is three dimensional by definition. A thing which is round in two dimensions we call a circle. And they are two very different concepts.
JP Cusick wrote: The atomic bomb was not "wishful thinking" or "a flight of fantasy" as the bomb was in the same league with finding God as they were both stunning and shocking to realize and to face.
The atomic bomb was never a "flight of fancy." The atom bomb was only stunning and shocking to people who had no concept of the current state of physics. In 1905 Einstein published a paper which first suggested the equivalency of mass and energy, in the form of the equation E=MC2. With E=MC2, the possibility of nuclear fission became a well known scientific reality. Fortunately for all of us, nuclear fission is not all that easy to set into motion.
JP Cusick wrote: Perception is Reality and Reality is Perception.
Reality is whatever it is. Currently there are approximately 7 billion people on planet Earth perceiving reality in various ways. Often in fundamentally different and even in diametrically opposed ways.
JP Cusick wrote: I do realize that mainstream Protestant Churches preach God as a kind of invisible Santa Claus in the sky and that distortion is not a true representation of anything real, and

they are not even being true to their self or to the members of their religion.
I don't know of any modern day churches that teach that God is an invisible old man in the sky looking down on us from Heaven. In fact, many churches consider themselves to be quite progressive and modern for openly recognizing this fact. In ancient times Heaven and the heavens were the same thing. Heaven was located behind the vale of stars, and God was up there watching. Modern astronomy has largely eliminated this notion.
JP Cusick wrote: A false perception does create a false reality.
This is inevitably true. From our perception of our macro-world, we perceive solid mass. The macro-world is a type of false reality. Because our macro-world perception entirely misses the fact that what we perceive as solid mass is actually made up of tiner and tiner bits, all of them doing and reacting for causes of their own. And this is the hypo micro-world world of quantum mechanics, which is responsible for everything that occurs in our macro-world. And now science is learning to manipulate the hypo micro-world of quantum mechanics to satisfy our own objectives. Technology is not the result of wishful thinking or make believe. It is the result of understanding the laws of physics; what is possible, and what is fantasy.

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Image "The word God is for me nothing more than the expression and product of human weaknesses, the Bible a collection of honorable, but still primitive legends which are nevertheless pretty childish. No interpretation no matter how subtle can (for me) change this." -- Albert Einstein -- Written in 1954 to Jewish philosopher Erik Gutkind.

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